This is a process used by courts to settle the affairs of a deceased person. It aims at ensuring that the estate settles its obligations and that its assets are distributed justly according to the law. It is the duty of the court to make sure that all eligible beneficiaries get an equal share of the estate. However, there are assets that will not be included in the probate. Such include insurance policies and assets funded by a trust. Probate assets include real estate owned by the individual, investment accounts as well as solely owned businesses. For as long as an asset is not designated, then it will undergo this probate process. It is for this reason that you need to always have a will.
You will have close to four years to file a probate as a beneficiary. Sometimes it is because these family members are not sure of what they want. It will involve both time and energy. It also takes a lot of both trust and disclosure. The executor may take between six and eighteen months to settle this estate. If you are able to avoid family disputes, then the process will be relatively shorter. You will need to be accountable to the last cent. There a more probability of a beneficiary contesting the trust in place. This will make it necessary to have the assets frozen. This can be achieved through having a lien placed on the property. This will mean that the trustee cannot sell or refinance the at least for the period of the lien. You will have the freedom to ask for a restraining order that will be in existence temporarily or get an injunction. This will make sure that the assets under the trust are not vulnerable to any kind of waste.
A probate process seeks to settle all financial obligations. Upon this settlement, the property will then be shared as per the directions given by the deceased. This is where the executor will be named. It is within the rights of the beneficiaries to contest this particular choice. There will also be a need for the will to be proven valid. The probate process will always take time. With this window of time, more creditors will be allowed to come forward. Avoiding probate will also require a plan. This makes the whole process quite easy and fast. Come up with a trust that will give you room to move this property. Make the accounts to bear the property of being paid upon death. An established joint tenancy will do the magic too. Make sure you are more conversant with estate laws. In case you want to challenge the will, you will need an experienced attorney by your side.